Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Museum And Educational Center in Moscow, Russia by 3XN
April 24th, 2013 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: 3XN
The intent of the new Museum & Educational Centre (MEC) is to be a meaningful building beyond its iconic form. Through both an internal and external architectural expression of flexibility, it recognizes that architecture shapes behavior. In that regard, the new MEC is about connecting with people, while opening up the world of science, technology, innovation and Russia’s extraordinary achievements in these domains. As technology develops and we enter deeper into the 21st century, the convergence of Science and Art becomes even more relevant in our everyday interactions. Today’s society seeks ways that Science and Mathematics can be viewed as approachable disciplines, in order to understand the full potential of technology, and its applications in making our world a better place. The new MEC will be a gateway to this world, challenging and evolving visitors’ perception of science and technology.
In contrast to traditional Museum and Learning culture which constantly advises against ‘No touching’, ‘No talking’, and rule upon rule of what is and isn’t allowed; this building is designed to say – ‘Please interact!’ – ‘Please learn!’ –and most importantly, ‘Please enjoy!’ It is an invitation to the world to enter into a common dialogue with science and technology. It is a building that encourages interaction within and around both its interior and exterior; from both the urban and architectural scale.
The MEC is a building that is best described by three main points.
1. The MEC’s urban concept responds to students’ social, interactional needs and the grandeur of Lomonsovsky Avenue and the MSU’s main university tower.
2. Its architectural concept originates out of a desire to encourage interaction of visitors, information, and architectural space.
3. The MEC has a functional approach that places the work flow and interaction of the visitor, user, staff and collection in a clear strategy for ease of functionality.
The MEC is placed on the outer, University ring road, yet maintains a strong relationship with the existing, formal axis and semi-circle urban planning strategy. The building is lifted for entry, grandeur and in a respectful gesture towards the main MSU building and Masterplan. The western corner pushes down to capture student activities at a more human scale, while also acting as a terminus for the outer University ring road.The external form responds to the internal concept and spiraling movement around the social and learning hub while also reacting to its surrounding context.
The architectural concept starts from the inside out. It begins with the desire to create a social hub – a central space – encouraging both visual and physical interaction between visitors, users and exhibitions. This is achieved through a large, diagonally oriented atrium space which spirals upwards linking the various programmatic functions and visitor experience.
FAÇADE AS DAYLIGHTING CONTROL AND URBAN INFORMATION
Functionally the building is quite simple. From ground level, visitors and users get a glimpse of the various program spread throughout the building with the most public program placed on the lower levels and the least public, research and lab based program placed on the upper levels.